CENTER: Tame the intense sun of a west-facing room with a refreshing pastel for the walls. Delightfully cool in summer, the scheme is equally pleasing in winter when the lower sun warms the room and the pale colors reflect precious winter light. When you frame large windows or French doors with a vibrant color, the outdoors becomes art. Light flooring, fabric, and furniture create a soothing scheme by minimizing contrast. Where the temperatures steam most of the year, residents naturally turn to the cool of pastels as a counterbalance to the sun. Today, the easy look of the tropics is a popular decorating style even in much more temperate climates. To achieve this island-inspired palette, start with pale walls (pink and blue are traditional favorites] and paint the ceiling in an equally pale or slightly deeper tint. Blue and blue-green porch ceilings are traditional in the Caribbean and Florida Keys for relief from the heat and to protect homes from unfriendly spirits. (An easy way to achieve a pleasing color: Lighten the trim color from your paint chip.] In cooler climates, this lighthearted style translates well into sunrooms, porches, kitchens, or family rooms with western exposures. Or, follow tradition and paint your porch or sunroom ceiling icy blue. RIGHT: Searching for a wall color that flatters people and possessions? Pale pinks, NAVY DINING OUT IDEAS which cast a soft rosy glow as they reflect both artificial and natural light, are ideal. Pink naturally works with equally pale blues, as in this sitting roomkitchen, or with yellows or greens of the same delicate intensity. In more formal settings, pink creates a delicate backdrop for dark wood furniture pieces, which benefit, as do people, from flattering light.